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National Right to Life Applauds Blanket Pro-Life Veto Warning by President Bush

May 3, 2007 | 2007 Press Releases

WASHINGTON —  President Bush today sent identical letters to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nv.), stating flatly, “I will veto any legislation that weakens current Federal policies and laws on abortion, or that encourages the destruction of human life at any stage.”

Douglas Johnson, legislative director for National Right to Life, commented, “We appreciate that the President is drawing a bright line — he will veto any appropriations bill, or any other bill, that would weaken the existing laws against federal funding of abortion or weaken other pro-life policies.”

155 members of the House of Representatives and 34 members of the U.S. Senate had already sent the President previously unpublicized letters (dated March 30 and February 1, respectively), urging the President to veto bills that weaken existing pro-life policies, and indicating that they will vote to sustain such vetoes.  Those numbers exceed the number required to sustain a veto in either house.

The President’s letter comes as congressional appropriations committees are about to begin moving forward with funding bills for the fiscal year that begins October 1.  Many important pro-life policies are kept in place by provisions of such appropriations bills, sometimes called “riders,” including the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funding for abortion (except to save the life of the mother, or in cases of rape or incest).

Pro-abortion advocacy groups have been pressuring the new Democratic congressional leadership to attack these pro-life riders.

In his letters today, the President wrote, “I am concerned that this year the Congress may consider legislation that could substantially change Federal policies and laws on abortion, and allow taxpayer dollars to be used for the destruction of human life.  I am writing to make sure that there is no misunderstanding of my views on these important issues.”

President Bush’s letter to Speaker Pelosi is posted here.

President Bush’s letter to Majority Leader Reid is posted here.

The letter from 155 members of the U.S. House of Representatives to President Bush, pledging to vote to sustain vetoes on pro-life issues, is posted here.  The letter from 34 senators is posted here.